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3 Tips to Improve Your Concentration

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Image by silviarita from Pixabay

Focus and concentration isn’t just about working – it’s about being more present, being more observant and being faster to react.

So how do you go about concentrating more in day-to-day life?

Rich environments

The great thing about flow research is that it’s showing us more and more ways to be more engaged with the environment and more excited by what we do. There are plenty of ways you can increase flow and one of the most promising is simply to create more ‘rich environments’ to spend time in.

Simply put: if you’re working in a grey cubicle at work, then your brain is going to shut down and go into autopilot. Conversely, if you work in an exciting, modern office, then you’re going to find yourself feeling more inspired, engaged and interested in what you’re doing.

This can be traced back to our evolutionary routes. Being in a novel environment back in the wild would have meant discovering a new area with new potential threats and new potential food sources – thus it paid to be more alert and more focused.

You can work better then by making richer environments but you can also be more engaged with life by making other environments richer and more exciting. Decorate your home with more interesting ornaments, with plants and with more colorful paint and wallpaper. Take different routes home when you walk back from work. Wear more colorful clothes. All of it will help you to be more awake and more engaged.

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Image by Jess Foami from Pixabay

Find the Fun

When you play a computer game, you’re essentially training your brain and learning. And it’s learning that the brain enjoys and that we find addictive. Think about it: when you pick up a new game, you have to learn the controls, then you have to learn the rules and then you gradually get better. Each time you do well, you hear a satisfying sound and see a flash of light or a score to reward you.

Learning these new skills causes you to form new neuronal connections in your brain via something called ‘brain plasticity’. At the same time, the reward tells your brain that this was a good performance and thus the connection strengthens. This is what’s addictive about games. So why is actual learning so boring? Why is work so boring? It’s because it’s repetitive, there’s no instant sense of reward and there’s little in the way of challenge.

So instead of just going through the motions, you need to find what’s fun about your given situations or you need to make it fun. If you can turn learning into a game with lots of little rewards, then you’ll find studying better. Instead of just walking to work the same way every day, why not challenge yourself to discover new routes, to cut time off without jogging, or to avoid the cracks.

Sound childish? That’s the point. Kids love childish activities because their brains are so plastic at that age as they learn. If you keep making games for yourself, you’ll keep learning and your brain will stay plastic.
Instead of getting bored tidying, why not turn it into a game by throwing the rubbish into the dustbin from a distance and keeping a score as you go?

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Image by Alexas_Fotos from Pixabay

Making it Interesting

If what you’re doing can’t be made fun, then perhaps it can be made interesting. This is the same thing as we mentioned before – it’s staying switched on to the long term, disconnected benefits of the situation.Let’s be honest, sometimes it can be boring hearing our other half drone on about work.

But to be a better partner, we need to stay focused. So remind yourself why it matters and why it’s important. It matters because it will make you a better partner and if you’re a better partner, you’ll have a happier life. Or think about how it’s interesting: perhaps the social dynamics are more illuminating than you at first give them credit for? What does your partner’s mood tell you about them?



Likewise, if you’re forced to read something dull, try and find what’s interesting about it. If you need to do a project on door locks for your degree, then try to find some kind of passion for that subject. Think about it: door locks are essentially a type of cryptography, as expressed by a mechanic. If you like computers, then maybe think about how door locks relate to cyber security. There’s always some angle you can use to make a subject more interesting.

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Fundamentals of Creative Thinking

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What exactly is creativity? Indeed, there are a number of ways you can define the word “creativity”. However, the most modest way to define this mysterious element that is shared by all people is the fact that creativity is the ability of the person’s mind to acquire facts, materials, and/or ideas and distinguish them in a distinctive manner or way. It is a unique point of view, a fresh idea and/or a new way of looking at a certain problem.

A lot of people will tell you that they are not creative, or you may even think that you are not. But then, you have to realize that everyone is truly creative. Every person has his/her own creative style. A few are good at producing new ideas and playing around with them, making those ideas more functional, while others are simply fine when it comes to identifying unusually new solutions and ways of doing things.

Take a glance at your surroundings, at the house or apartment you are living in, at the fixtures and furniture in this space. Look at the clothes that you wear. Each manufactured product you view was, at one time or another, an idea or thought in a person’s mind.



Each time you make a decision about something it is because your mind perceives the situation a certain way. Each time you make a decision on what to eat and what to wear, or how to organize something and get to work, you are being creative. When people envision a beautifully colored flower and then mentally change a few of its characteristics (such as its shape, texture, petal shape and more), no one will have the same image after five minutes.

This is mainly due to the fact that everyone will produce a unique image. It only means that everyone is creative.
Creative thinking is a natural way of thinking and not a different way of thinking. You have been taught about thinking logically, re-productively and even linearly. Along with this, you might have been informed that creativity in itself should be learned and taught in the same manner as other subjects in academics.

It should not be the case. Conceptual blending is in the center of imagination. It is a cognitive process, which functions under the consciousness level. This involves the association of 2 cognitive ideas to produce new meanings, while explaining creativity and abstract thoughts – an underlying mental process that is distinctive to humans.

Constantly occurring without your awareness, these blends are vital for the conception of emergent ideas, global insight, and meanings. With these ideas in mind, you should have a better understanding about the basics of creative thinking.

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How To Cope With and Simplify Stress

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Changing Things

I’m going to identify some of the major methods that will assist you in building resilience and coping with stress. There are methods that someone can apply to bypass the mental and physical reaction to stress. There are also tools that people can apply to distress and heighten their overall well being.

The methods named here can be divided up into two categories, as follows:

1. Relaxation methods and Self-hypnosis.

2. Coping with Stress

  • Exercise
  • Music
  • Meditation
  • Massage

Self Esteem is a crucial factor in conquering stress. Determining that you are capable of meeting and conquering life’s stressors is a good start in building self-esteem. Also, a crucial part of self-esteem is believing your worthy of love and happiness.

Signs of Low Self Esteem:

Go through the following list and consider how many of these reflect your own thoughts.

  • I do not like myself.
  • I do not deserve love.
  • There’s something wrong with me.
  • I’m not worthy of respect from other people.
  • It’s tough for me to make eye contact with other people.
  • I’m profoundly distressed when other people criticize me.

Did one of these sound like you? Did more than one sound like your personality? If yes, then you have to take a few concrete steps to better your self-esteem.

Why Low Self Esteem Increases Stress Levels In Your Life:

Low self-esteem steps up stress levels in your life due to two reasons-

1. You’re constantly gauging yourself negatively. You do not permit yourself to open up to felicity due to an ongoing damaging internal dialogue.

2. You’re constantly concerned about what others think of you and go to unreasonable lengths to attain their acceptance and approval.

Confidence Vs. Self-Esteem: They Are Different!

Self-esteem is different from self-confidence in numerous ways. You may be extremely successful in your chosen career and yet you still find yourself feeling terrible. You need to be capable of loving yourself to experience happiness.

Several successful individuals are miserable at heart and have terrible self-esteem. Low self-esteem makes it easier for other people to manipulate you, and it also makes you terribly unsure of your own feelings and opinions.

What You Can Do To Improve Your Self Esteem?

It must be obvious to you why it’s important to work on your self-esteem. Without high self-esteem, you’ll be an unhappy individual even if you’ve been able to achieve material success. Low self-esteem makes it extremely tough for you to succeed in any endeavor: being your own worst enemy, you’ll be perpetually placing obstacles in your own path.

Following are some of the things you should do to improve your self-esteem:

1. Stop criticizing yourself. Learn not to condemn yourself for the small slip-ups that we all are prone to make in our lives. You have to accept mistakes as a necessary part of life.

2. Praise yourself when you do something great. Be overgenerous in your praise, but it’s crucial to be honest.
3. Whenever you undertake some activity, visualize yourself as being successful in it.

Relaxation Methods: Physical & Mental

It’s normal to experience stress occasionally. The reality is life is full of stress. As a matter of fact, some stress is healthy: we all need a bit of stress in our lives, it spices up the life. It motivates to accomplish the most daunting tasks. Can stress be a positive tool? The answer is a definitive yes. Imagine you have a deadline to meet; while your tension levels become elevated, you find the strength inside you to complete the assignment on time.

Stress helps you to become more centered, and in some cases increases your strength when you’re in a pressured position. Maybe you have discovered you are able to think more clearly when trying to meet that deadline. Yes, stress can stimulate the brain and sharpen one’s performance. It’s obvious that stress is a necessary component used to occasionally clear the clutter from your mind. When approached positively, stress can help you evolve by letting go of uninvited thinking.



 

It Helps To Keep Stress Levels Down

While it’s inevitable that you’ll experience stress in all walks of life, it’s significant to learn stress management and relaxation methods to control stress and channelize it to your own advantage, instead of getting bogged down by it.

Here we’ll identify what progressive muscle relaxation is. Progressive Muscle Relaxation is an easy physical activity that will assist you in keeping calm at all times.

Advantages of Relaxation

  • Additional energy.
  • Clear mind.
  • Improved decision making.
  • Mental clarity.
  • Better control of your life.

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Significance of Physical Activity in Handling Stress 

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These days life is busy: with deadlines and meetings and traffic, it is difficult to find time for your own care. You begin ignoring your body, and slowly signs of stress start showing on your body. It becomes all-important to undo the harm and be prepared to confront the consequences. Doing physical activity for twenty – thirty minutes a day could undo several of the adverse effects of stress.

Each day physical activity not only makes you look and feel good and even loose a few extra pounds. It can also make your life less trying. Getting physical exercise can decrease anxiety by up to 50%. Suppose half the tension is gone just because you took a morning run. While a workout cannot do away with all the affairs you need deal with, it can assist you in coping with your stress better.

Here are a few of the several reasons physical activity is awesome for decreasing your tension and worries.

1. Physical activity improves your mood: physical exercise brings on chemicals that make you feel happier and ready to confront the day. It also increases blood flow to the brain; promoting this pleased, energetic sensation. The better you feel about life, the less stress will weigh you down.

2. Physical activity brings about additional energy: Stress makes you feel run down and exhausted throughout the day. If you exercise in the morning, you will get an excellent energy boost to keep you going in the late morning and afternoon. You may experience being exhausted throughout the first few weeks of physical activity, but be relentless and the energy will come.

 3. Physical activity helps you sleep: there’s nothing that decreases stress more than a Great night’s sleep. Sleep not only recharges your strained, aching muscles; it also refreshes your mind and helps you to process information from the day. Getting more, higher quality sleep on a regular basis will assist you coping with the challenges of day-to-day life.

4. Physical activity allows time to think: many of the stress we confront is from our own mind. Rather than working and mending problems, we are worrying about them day in and day out. Physical activity gives you time alone to center on your thoughts and clear your head without a bunch of distractions. That way, after your work out, you are able to get to work on mending a problem rather than worrying about it

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 Finding the right exercises: If you cannot do an aerobic workout, or just do not think it is enough; try yoga or stretching or jogging. These activities are great for soothing sore, tense muscles, clearing your mind, and relaxing you. Plus, if you have no free time in the morning, these exercises can be done at night without keeping you from your sleep (they will likely even help).

You can use the internet or just find a book or take a class that shows you positions or exercises that are easy for you. You should be able to find poses and movements that are associated specifically to stress reduction and relaxation. So design a plan and begin a regular workout routine. If you adhere to it, you will begin to feel less stressed, less nervous, and more at ease very fast.

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Ten Tips For Reducing Stress

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1. Breathe Deeply. Practice Breathing Techniques Regularly.

A lot of people seem to overlook how easy and useful this tactic can be for relieving stress, especially in the heat of the moment. I know, the advice “take a deep breath” may seem cliché. But it really does hold true when it comes to stress. Take a minute or two break from life to focus on your breathing. Sit up straight and close your eyes if possible, and put your hand on your belly.

Slowly inhale through your nose, feeling the breath of air start in your abdomen and progress it’s way to the top of your head. Next, reverse the process as you exhale through your mouth. It’s been said that deep breathing counters the effects of stress by slowing the heart rate and lowering the body’s blood pressure. Buddhist monks have been known to be very conscious of deliberate breathing during meditation because of this.

Another method you can use it to sit up in your chair with your feet flat on the floor and your hands on top of your knees. Breathe in and out slowly, with deep full breaths while also concentrating on your lungs as they expand and contract in your chest. Many doctors and researchers have actually found that shallow breathing is consistent with increased stress and deep breathing fills your blood with oxygen and in turn helps to center your body and clear your mind.

2. Meditate For A Period Of Time In The Morning And Evening

It should come as no surprise to you that meditation is an excellent way to help relieve your stress. When performed correctly, it should release your mind and allow you to focus on peace. Many people struggle with meditation at first, because it can be a little tricky. And in all honesty, it does take a little bit of time to learn.

There’s many great articles and even courses on how to meditate, but you can easily get started by simply sitting in the corner or somewhere peace, closing your eyes and listening to music or soaking in the sounds around you. Some meditation guru’s will even encourage you to listen to those natural sounds during the process, and to even burn some sort of incense to help break the stress that’s present in your body.

3. Listen To Music That Promotes Your Chilled Out Mood

Listening to the right music is super important when you’re trying to reduce stress in your life and find your inner balance. Some music can in fact heighten your stress levels when you listen to it. One type of music that researchers have proven to help stress levels is “baroque” music. This music is based around a tempo of 60 beats per minute, which coincidentally is about the rate that our heart should be.

Baroque music has actually been shown to increase the alpha waves in both the left and right sides of your brain which assist in improving your learning ability, calmness and even your creativity. Because of this, many corporate trainers have now incorporated this style of music during memory training sessions to better assist their students in improving both their comprehension and their memory.

Of course, you should focus on the kind of music that you like and which brings comfort to you. So this point will different depending on who you are and what your tastes are.

4. Exercise, Even If It’s Just For A Minute Or Two Each Day

Listen, exercising doesn’t have to be power lifting at the gym or training for some sort of marathon event. A simple short stroll around the office or block, or even just standing up to stretch during a break at work can often times be just the immediate stress relief you need in some situations. Getting your blood flowing releases endorphin’s and can actually improve your mood almost instantaneously. If you find that you have more time to exercise, that’s even better.

They say that exercising for 30 minutes per day is one of the best things you can do for both your mind and your body. Not only does it help you keep fit, but it also gets the blood pumping around in your body. While you’re doing exercises, there’s chemicals being released from your brain that can elevate your mood.

5. Make It A Point To Eat Right With A Healthy Diet

Studies have linked that stress levels are directly impacted by a proper diet. The problem is that when we’re overwhelmed and stressed out, we often ignore healthy eating habits. This results in eating sugary, fatty snack foods as a quick pick-me-up to satisfy our hunger and even our mood. Try to avoid sugary snacks and plan ahead if possible.

Fruits and vegetables are obviously a great choice, and fish with higher levels of omega-3 fatty acids have also been shown to help reduce the symptoms and levels of stress. This means that a tuna sandwich is truly beneficial to both your mood and your brain as well.

Better than hypnosis

6. Try To Drink At Least Eight Glass of Water Per Day

I’m sure you know this already, but without water, humans and most living things can’t survive. After all, it’s been said to be one of the most precious resources that we possess on the planet. With that said, to maintain your health, most doctors and medical professionals will recommend a MINIMUM of eight glasses of water per day. This means PLAIN WATER.

As in flavored water or coffee certainly does not count towards that goal. You’ll truly be amazed at how much better you feel and less stress you become as you hydrate more every day.

7. Limit Both Alcohol AND Coffee Consumption

Alcohol and coffee are both considered great sources of stress, seeing as they both increase the heart rate and make us more prone to stress situations. If you can, try to limit the amount of coffee and alcohol that you consume each day, and you will almost certainly notice that your level of stress will decrease. Some researchers say that consuming one to two glasses of alcohol like a red wine, per day, can be a healthy choice.

But since we’re focused on reducing stress, it’s a good idea to consult with your doctor or physician to check if this is the best decision for you. Another thing to be cautious about is that caffeine can often give you a “high” which
you will become dependent on over time. This certainly won’t be beneficial towards reducing the amount of stress that’s present in your life.

8. Schedule Breaks Throughout Your Day

We all know how stressful work can be, whether it’s the environment, the coworkers, or the tasks at hand – it can all add up rather quickly. One of the biggest blunders that people make in their work life is to neglect taking breaks throughout the day to refresh the mind. In actuality, there’s no real legal business on the planet that will require anybody to work 24 hours per day non-stop.

Researchers have actually proven that if you don’t schedule at least 1 hour for a break every day, you’re far more likely to have health issues over a prolonged period of time. Always remember that life is truly short in the grand scheme of things. Don’t waste all of your time on work. Take the time to go out and enjoy your day regardless of
where you are. Make sure that you schedule a number of (short) breaks during the work day.

Even if you just take that time to go outside for 5 minutes to get some fresh air and a drink. That sort of break will help you to clear your mind and allow you to prepare yourself to tackle the rest of the work for the day.

9. Identify At Least One Good Thing That Happened Today

This will definitely sound a bit generic in terms of advice and tips, but it’s such solid advice that if you haven’t started doing this, you really should consider it. Every evening all over the world, families and / or friends congregate in the evenings or after work and vent about their day and the events that it was made up of. However, instead of creating a negative atmosphere from the moment you walk in the door and sit down, try starting off on a different note.

Do this by exchanging good news and things that were positive about your day. It’s really not difficult at all to address the good things that happened in life, and as a result, you’ll find yourself more grateful for the things you have. You’ll also find that you’re better able to face stressors and other unfortunate occurrences in your day.

10. Be Prepared (Prepare For Tomorrow And The Future)

It’s true that nothing can be more stressful than walking into a situation being completely unprepared. That’s why you should invest some time every day towards getting ready for the following day. This could be as simple as drafting up a short to-do list and even cleaning up your environment and living area before you settle down for the evening.

Knowing that you have all of the different bases covered means that you’ll be far less likely to fret about things that need to get done in the evenings or when you’re not busy with work and other stuff. By better preparing yourself and organizing your life, you’ll give yourself a better sense that you’re fully in control of the situation and can handle it. This truly does set a positive tone for the day, evening, and future days, which in turn can help you to get far more accomplished.

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How to Control Your State of Mind

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If you could genuinely master your emotions  take complete control over the way you felt at any given time – then that would be the ultimate technique. I’m serious. If you could do this, then you would become unstoppable in a fight. You would become relentless in the gym. And you would be able to apply yourself to a task in a way that would previously have been impossible.

I imagine that you’re probably rolling your eyes at this point. You probably think I’ve been reading too many hippy blogs. Maybe reading a little too much fluffy self-help. But I’m serious. Most people seriously underestimate the power and influence of their emotions. So, allow me to elucidate you and then demonstrate how you can get your state of mind back under control. At least to some degree.

Unlimited Strength, Perfect Focus, Incredible Creativity and Social Skills

That’s quite a bold heading right there and you might already be shaking your head in disbelief. But hear me out.

Emotions and Strength

Want strength? Some of the most feared fighters in history were known as the Beserkers. These Norse warriors were so called because of their ‘bersker rage’ – a mad fit of anger that they would fly into on the battle field. In this heightened and agitated state, they would become almost invulnerable and would also be able to accomplish feats of incredible strength.

There have been more recent accounts of something similar too. Hysterical strength is a term used to describe more recent scenarios where individuals have seemingly been able to dig into an immense reserve of strength at will. This is where the stories of Mothers lifting cars off of their children trapped beneath come in. Likewise, there is a story of a rock climber who managed to bench press themselves free of a huge boulder likely 200KG or more.

Think it’s just a myth? Turns out there is a solid scientific explanation for how this might be possible. Under extreme stress, it seems likely that the body produces excess amounts of testosterone, adrenaline and cortisol. These hormones increase the heartrate, focus, awareness and muscle tone and that is where the extra strength comes from.

Actually, it goes a little deeper than that even. You see, all of us have limits to our strength imposed by our minds and our biology. When you go to lift a weight, you do so by recruiting muscle fiber  little bands that make up the muscle and contract in order to give us our strength. The most muscle fiber that the average person can recruit at once under normal circumstances is around 30%.

The most that a highly trained athlete can recruit is closer to 50%. So, a highly trained athlete is only capable of tapping into roughly half of their maximum strength. This is what we mean when we refer to a ‘mind muscle connection’. Ever seen someone get electrocuted in a movie (think Jurassic Park)? As you know, the idea is that the individual will get flung across the room into the far wall.

What throws them? Their own muscle. The electricity causes all the muscle to contract at once, which creates such a jolt that the person goes absolutely flying. Imagine if you could harness that power and use it to leap up onto a roof!
The reason we can’t access so much of our strength is a) that it would likely cause us injury as we would break a muscle, pull a ligament etc. and b) that it would fatigue us.

If we were to use that much of our muscle power in a single movement, we’d have no energy left for anything else!
But under the right circumstances, being able to dip into these huge reserves of strength is incredibly useful. And adrenaline and other hormones under the right conditions allow us to tap into that power.

Studies show that yelling in the gym can actually increase adrenaline and thereby enhance muscle fiber recruitment, resulting in strength improvements! Now imagine if you could tap into even just 80% of that power at will? Simply by harnessing your emotions?

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Emotions for Calm, Collected Focus

But there’s only so far that being able to leap tall buildings and punch through walls will get you. In the real world, physical strength isn’t really what matters. This then is where the ‘flow state’ comes in. A flow state is often describes as a state of calm, focused, bliss. It is what happens when the world seems to slow down because you are so intently focused and engaged on what you are doing.

Have you ever opened a cupboard and seen everything fall out but moved in super-fast motion to catch it? That’s a flow state. More often we hear about it in extreme sports – athletes finding their flow and being able to pull off incredible stunts at incredible speeds. Outside of physical activities it is seen in music. When the entire band synchronizes during a jam, this is a type of flow state.

When you have a conversation with someone that lasts all night, that’s a flow state. When you’re writing a book and you write so long that you don’t even notice the time passing that is a flow state. Studies show us that executives in flow manage are hugely more productive than those that aren’t. The same goes for startups.

So, what is flow? Essentially, it’s another emotion. Another mental state that is triggered by the release of hormones and neurotransmitters. In this case, it is a subtle variation on the fight or flight response, a subtle variation on stress and panic. Here, you believe something is just as important as preventing yourself from getting injured, it is just as compelling as fighting for your life  but it is also fun rather than scary.

You have the entire attention of your body and mind which brings about a release of excitatory hormones along with calming ones and those related with bliss  such as anandamide. This actually suppresses activity in the prefrontal cortex, triggering a state known as ‘temporary hypofrontality’. This prevents us from worrying, from second guessing or from over-thinking.

We just do. It’s the opposite to how most of us live our lives today and that’s why many of us are filled with anxiety, frozen with fear. Imagine being able to talk up to a woman/man in a bar and deliver your wittiest conversation ever. Imagine being able to talk in front of an audience with passion and conviction and enrapture them completely in what you’re saying. Imagine being able to work on the projects that matter to you for hours on end without even looking up.

No fear. No doubt. No bursts of anger or unwanted emotion. And this is when our best work is done. This is when we are happiest. Many people try and live their lives in flow as much as possible. The problem is that most of us are full of anxiety and busy with chores and things we need to do.

These limitations leave us stressed, anxious and busy and they take our mind out of the moment. Our entire body and mind cannot possibly be in-sync when we are worrying about debt, or what our boss said at the office.Entering flow means being in the moment which not only makes you happy and confident  it makes you unstoppable.

Better than hypnosis

Creativity

Changing your emotions can even make you more creative. The opposite of a flow state is something called the default mode network. This is a network of brain regions that spring into action when you are engaged in boring repetitious work or when you are just relaxing. This is what happens when you allow yourself to become completely at ease and let your mind wander.

Now many people give this mental state a hard time. They say that this is when your ‘inner Woody Allen’ chirps up. This is the opposite to ‘living in the moment’. But in fact, this is also when your creativity kicks in. This is the state that Einstein was in when he came up with his special theory of relativity (while working in a patent office!).
This is daydreaming and that is when we come up with plans, ideas and more.

No emotion is a bad thing. The answer is just being able to tap into the right emotion at the right time. It’s about emotional control.

Social Skills
And finally, the obvious power of emotion: social skill. If you want to seem confident, then you need to stop worrying about what others think. If you want to be a leader, then you need to be able to take command, not second guess yourself and not get upset and visibly riled when things go wrong. If you want to engage others and make friends and partners, you need to be charismatic, engaging and entertaining.

All these things are based once again on having control over your emotions. But the thing is: most of us don’t have any control. Most of us sulk when we don’t have a good day and put ourselves in even more of a funk. Most of us are scared when things are wrong. When we’re stressed, we argue with our partners and avoid important work in the office. We sabotage ourselves, undermine ourselves and struggle to get things done  all because we can’t control our emotions.

Taking Control

So how do you take back control over your emotions? There are multiple ways, but let’s address two important points: physiology and mindset. Physiology refers to the fact that your emotions are really an extension of how you feel. Emotions describe things like happiness, sadness, anger, fear. We think that these emotions are born from our minds but a lot of the time, that’s not the case at all.

Rather, emotions come from our bodies. Emotions come from feelings which include things like hunger, tiredness, hot, cold. The very function of your emotions is to trigger behaviors that will help you to fix the way you feel. When you haven’t eaten enough lately, your blood sugar dips. This in turn triggers a release of cortisol – the stress hormone. This tells you that something needs to change and wakes you up and in the wild, this would have encouraged you to look for food.

When you eat, your blood sugar spikes, you produce leptin and serotonin. This makes you happy and content and encourages you to sleep  eventually serotonin converts to melatonin the sleep hormone. So, in other words, the way you feel is often the result your physiology and that changes the way you think. You think you’re angry because you had a bad day? Possibly. More likely, you had a bad day because you’re angry.

And you’re angry because:

  • You didn’t sleep
  • You’re in mild pain
  • You haven’t eaten enough
  • You’ve eaten the wrong things

You get the gist? So, one way to change your emotions and to take back control is to acknowledge this. Firstly, recognize that if you’re angry, it’s probably due to physiological reasons and it will pass. At least it won’t seem so bad later.

Secondly, seek to change this. Eat something. Sleep. Take the cue. Learn to follow your own rhythms and work when you’re naturally most productive. Follow the rhythms of the day and get your circadian cycles in check.
And at the same time, look at ways you can directly control your physiology. The very best way? Breathing!

If you learn to breathe correctly (using belly breathing to fill the lower portion of the lungs, then the upper portion) and if you use slow, controlled breaths, then you will be able to lower your heart-rate and calm your entire body. This will change your parasympathetic tone, taking you out of ‘fight or flight’ and into ‘rest and digest’.

Try it the next time you feel overly stressed, overly competitive or worked up after an intense workout – your heart rate will slow and your mind will grow calmer. The other tool you can use is something called CBT. Now we’re looking at the psychological, self-talk aspect. CBT stands for ‘Cognitive Behavioral Therapy’ and this is a popular form of psychotherapeutic intervention used to treat phobias and other anxiety disorders.

The idea is to look at the content of your thoughts. The self-talk that you give yourself to work yourself into a panic, or to calm yourself down. If you are thinking things like “I’m worried I might fall off that ledge” then of course you are going to be scared. If you think things like “I’m grateful for my wife” then you will be less likely to feel unhappy with where you are in life.

It goes deeper than that of course. You can use CBT to challenge long-held beliefs and to break negative self-talk habits by challenging your thoughts and testing your hypotheses. This is called ‘cognitive restructuring’.
In the short term, you can use CBT techniques in order to more honestly assess your state of mind and your emotions and to then change the way you feel about a situation.

So if you were stressed that you had a deadline you couldn’t meet and it was ruining your evening, then you might use cognitive restructuring in order to assess the thoughts making you stressed and replace them with more productive ones.

For example, you might consider:

  • What is the point of being stressed? Will it make matters better?
  • What’s the worst case scenario? Would it really be that bad to tell the boss you can’t finish work on time? Are they expecting too much of you anyway?
  • When was the last time you did this?
  • Are there other ways you could lessen the blow?
  • What would you rather pay attention to right now?

Combine this with controlled breathing and bring your focus to the thing that is most useful to you right now. In the long term, you can use CBT in order to bridge the gap between your thoughts and your physiology. You see, your physiology and your emotions are designed to drive you toward desirable states: sex, food, shelter, love, success, social acceptance.woman-690118_640
Image by Free-Photos from Pixabay

The problem is that the tasks you need to accomplish often don’t get you those things in the short term. In the long term, entering data into that spreadsheet helps you keep your job which helps you pay for food and keep your family!
But in the short term, it just means more boring paperwork.

So now you need to remind yourself why you do what you do. And you’ll do this not only with words but with visualization. Picture where you want to be. Picture the wealth you want to have, the success, the satisfaction. Then remind yourself that the things you do today are actually driving you toward the things you want. This is when your heart and mind will finally be on the same page. And that’s when anything becomes possible.

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Einstein was right! Your energy imbalance is the root of your illness

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“Concerning matter, we have been all wrong. What we have called matter is energy, whose vibration has been so lowered as to be perceptible to the senses. There is no matter.” ~ Albert Einstein

This means that everything in the universe is energy… just different manifestations of it.

On an atomic level; your body is a sea of energy – vibrating at different frequencies.

Einstein knew it… and so did his adversary; the genius and energy pioneer Nikola Tesla – who was quoted saying:

“If you want to find the secrets of the universe, think in terms of energy, frequency and vibration.”

This is also the secret to excellent health.

You can use energy, frequency and vibration to heal a vast range of diseases… as well as chronic pain.

The World Health Organization has cited over 100 different ailments for which this energy-based natural therapy has proven to be highly effective…

Relief ranging from:

    • Chronic pain
    • Allergies
    • Addictions
    • High blood pressure
    • Asthma
    • Ulcers
    • Gastrointestinal

disorders

  • Obesity
  • Sciatica and many, more.

 

This energy-based natural therapy is Acupuncture: the ancient and powerful technique that has helped million of people around the world to heal, and continues to do so.

We all know somebody… or have at least read of a celebrity who swears-by the healing effects of acupuncture.

Most people don’t know that acupuncture (and other acu-therapies) is the practice of manipulating energy within your body.

The cornerstone of these acu-therapies is that our bodies contain a flow of energy that needs to circulate. The Chinese call this energy flow ‘Qi’ (pronounced ‘chee’). Qi is the energy force that supports all life. The Japanese call it “Ki”, Guru’s of India call it “Prana” and some Polynesian cultures call it “Mana”.

Qi needs to circulate through our bodies freely for us to maintain our physical and mental health.

Qi circulates through the body via our meridian lines.

Should our energy flow (Qi) slow down in one or more of these meridian lines, or there is a blockage in our meridian system, an imbalance will occur. And if not treated, pain, illness and disease will manifest.

Chinese medicine restores the natural flow of energy with the stimulation of specific pressure points (also known as acupoints).

Acupoints are like little whirlpools of energy that are dotted along your meridian lines.

By stimulating specific acupoints, a burst of energy will restore the circulation of a blocked meridian. This restores balance and harmony; which helps the body heal itself.

Many studies have proven the Meridian system. But one of the most popular was conducted by French Physicians Jean Claude Darras MD and Professor Pierre de Vernejoul.

They injected the isotope tracer Te99 into the acupoints of volunteer patients and then monitored the tracers movements using a gamma imaging camera.

The tracers travelled along the exact meridian lines within minutes after injection.

To challenge their findings, they injected non-meridian points – finding that the tracers simply pooled up and remained in the same spot.

Interestingly, tracers flowing through diseased parts of the body slowed down dramatically or stopped – compared to a fast flow around healthy parts of the meridian system.

Some skeptics dismiss acupressure citing the “placebo effect” – where 30% of people will be shown to heal in experiments when given a sugar pill instead of the “real medicine”. However, the placebo effect has been debunked because all kinds of animals – who can’t comprehend suggestion, also respond incredibly well to the healing properties of acupoint therapy.

Acupuncture isn’t the only means of treating blocked Qi…

Electricity also an effective means to stimulate Qi within the meridian system.

Chinese doctors combine electricity with acupuncture to achieve faster and longer lasting relief, but the prospect of electrified needles puts a lot of people off.

You can also use finger pressure instead of needles, this is called acupressure. Acupressure pre-dates acupuncture, and is equally effective. The Chinese were using it well before they had the technology to make needles.

Many people prefer acupressure because it can be practiced by yourself at home without having to worry about the dangers of needles.

Frequencies (vibrating energy) is another highly effective means for unblocking a congested meridian system.

Using the science of Entrainment (not entertainment!) you can use frequencies to restore your meridian system back to its natural state.

You have probably heard of the concept of entrainment before but not the name of it. Entrainment is defined as “a synchronization of two or more rhythmic cycles” – it’s a law of physics: when two objects are entrained with each other, they expend less energy.

It is this phenomenon that causes:

  • Female roommates’ menstrual cycles to sync together
  • Our heart rate and brain waves entraining/syncing to a hectic or a quiet environment
  • Fireflies that blink together at the same time
  • And the resetting of the internal body clock – after a very long plane flight

It doesn’t stop at biology. Entrainment happens with machines too – such as clocks to electric driers.

Entrainment can also be defined within: Physics, engineering, biomusicology, hydrodynamics and also brainwaves.

Modern medicine uses sound frequencies for many different applications. The most widely known use is ultrasound.

The meaning of the term “ultrasound” is an acoustic tool that uses a sound frequency higher than a humans hearing capabilities (20,000 Hz +).

This same principle is used for non-evasive surgery. Ultrasound frequencies are used by doctors to reduce joint pain and inflammation.

Newer uses of ultrasound have been used for non-evasive surgery where highly focused ultrasound frequencies are used to destroy tumors. High Intensity Focused Ultrasound (HIFU) is a relatively new breakthrough that has been used to destroy prostate cancer cells. Modern medicine also uses pulsed infrasonic sound waves to break up kidney stones.

As far as acu-therapies go: some therapists prefer finger pressure, some prefer needles, some use electrified needles, some use heat energy, and some therapists use vibrating energy.

But the newest form and most effective form of acu-therapies is the combination of acupressure with bio-frequencies.

It’s called Acu-Frequency TM.

Acu-Frequency is equally effective as electro-acupuncture, but because you aren’t dealing with electric needles, you can easily treat a host of nagging ailments – especially chronic pain, incredibly quickly.

Because it is so easy to apply – and safe, you can use it at home, at work, in the car, on the bus… anywhere.

You can expect fantastic results using either practice (acupressure or entrainment therapy) on its own, but combining them gives you an unprecedented ability to heal and restore your body and mind.

Follow this link right now to see what I’m talking about

Hip Mobility & Flexibility Exercises for Athletes

Hip Mobility & Flexibility Exercises for Athletes

Unlock Your Hip Flexors

Diffusing Fear Through Journaling

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You may be familiar with the concept of keeping a ―diary, but Journaling is slightly different.

A diary is often used to record your life events, but a journal is more about your feelings regarding those events – especially the ―negative feelings like fear, anger, grief, and so on.

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There are many different ways to journal, and we will explore some of them below. However, as with most of the techniques we have covered, there is plenty of room to personalize it to suit your own preferences. Let your creativity lead you as you explore this powerful process. Releasing the past.

One of the most trans-formative methods of Journaling is to explore the past events and
experiences that left you feeling powerless or frightened – and may still be affecting your life today.

For example, an incident of childhood sexual abuse may have created a strong fear response that flares up whenever you attempt to form an intimate relationship as an adult. Exploring the pain, guilt, shame, and anger relating to the sexual abuse can help greatly in purging those old emotions and finally starting the healing process.

How to do it:

Simply grab your journal and a pen and start writing your thoughts about the experience(s), how they made you feel when they happened, and how they still affect you now.
If the experiences involved another person (like an abuser), you can write letters directly to them to voice your feelings, or you can simply write as if you were telling a story.
The most difficult part of this process is that the old pain and fear you felt years ago can suddenly rise to the surface and threaten to overwhelm you again.
If this happens, try one or more of the techniques we covered previously to regain control.
However, the point is not to avoid feeling your feelings – but to process and purge them in healthy, constructive ways.

 

Here is one of my many Free ebooks to assist you.

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7 Secrets To Creating Your Best Life

What is TMJ?

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The temporomandibular joint is the hinge joint of the jaw that connects the lower jaw (mandible) to the temporal bone of the skull. This joint is an articular disc composed of fibrocartilagenous tissue. It comprises, all in all, of six parts: mandibular condyles, articular surface of the temporal bone, capsule, articular disc, ligaments and lateral pterygoid. The TM Joint facilitates movement of the jaws, thereby allowing essential functions like talking, eating and swallowing. Needless to say, the slightest afflictions caused to this joint, disrupt a great deal of its basic functions. The most common affliction that occurs is the TMJ Disorder. So, what is TMJ Disorder?

The TMJ Disorder is a term used to describe an acute inflammation of the TM Joint. It is categorized in three ways:

1. By myofascial pain: The fascia is the tissue that connects the different parts of your body. Fascia around the muscles is called myofascial. Thus, any injury to the myofascial, will automatically adversely affect the muscles. The most common TMJ disorder is associated with myofascial pain in the jaw muscles and neck.

2. By internal injury: Any dislocation, injury, or indeed, any derangement in the joint results in TMJ disorder.

3. By degenerative joint disease: Problems like osteoarthritis or rheumatoid arthritis of the jaw are underlying causes of TMJ disorder. It can’t be stated for certain what exactly causes TMJ disorder, although there are some standard contributing factors. These can be classified into dental issues (such as ill fitting dentures, tooth removal, missing teeth etc), injury or trauma (on or around the jaw), bad habits (like bruxism or wrong sleeping postures), social situations that cause stress and emotional upheavals (such as depression, anger or fear).

There are a number of signs that you can recognize as underlying symptoms of TMJ disorder. The most likely symptom is otalgia, more commonly known as earache. Since the TMJ is so close to the ear, if there’s a disorder in the TMJ, there are bound to be repercussions in the ear. The other fairly common symptom is toothache. Although toothaches are caused due to a number of reasons, a TMJ disorder may bring about toothaches, tooth mobility or even tooth loss. Usually, if the above listed signs are accompanied by headaches, they could be signalling a chronic TMJ disorder.

A number of remedies are available for those suffering from TMJ disorder. In the initial stages of the condition, treatments like heat and ice therapy, or jaw resting techniques are used. Pain medications such as ibuprofen and naproxen are also prescribed. Corrective dental surgeries are used if the condition worsens. Sometimes a splint or bite plate may be required to be introduced. Non invasive and natural cures are also available. These may include stress reduction therapies, soft food diets and face and neck exercises.

For conditions like TMJ disorder, it is always advisable to take a multi dimensional approach. A holistic treatment strengthens your body from within. Therefore, it is much more affective to combine alternative and conventional treatments for long lasting relief. Thus, working on stress reduction methods, along with following a soft food diet and a face and neck exercise routine can go a long way in not only healing the TMJ disorder but also in preventing it from happening again.

This article is based on the book, “TMJ No More” by Sandra Carter. Sandra is an author, researcher, nutritionist and health consultant who dedicated her life to creating the ultimate TMJ disorders solution guaranteed to permanently reverse the root cause of TMJ and dramatically improve the overall quality of your life,  without the use prescription medication and without any surgical procedures. Learn more here <=